Thursday, April 16, 2009

Cuteness and fiber. And sewing.

Yeah, sewing.

Yesterday the husbeast bought new uniforms (the new digital-camo working uniform in blue) and had to sew on patches and hem pants and all that jazz. The husbeast does the majority of his patch-sewing. That kind of heavy-duty stuff bothers my hands (that's my story and I'm sticking to it). It puts us in an odd situation because I'm the one who knows the gory details of sewing, but he's the one doing it. I do a lot of prep work though, like cutting pants and pinning hems, and all that.

The husbeast isn't bad at the basic stuff, of course (it's a sewing machine, of COURSE he can use it, it's a POWER TOOL), but when things go south, I get pulled into the chaos.

The digital camo is a new uniform, made with new fabric that we'd never dealt with before. So before I knew it, the husbeast was in my office, looming over me as I knit a sock (more on that in a minute), asking what to do to get the damn patches to hold still while he sewed them down, because pinning alone wasn't cutting it.

Long story short, he needed iron-on fusible stuff (Stitch Witch), we didn't have any in stock in The Pit, and off I went to Hancock Fabrics to buy some. And some properly matching thread, since I was there. And, well, there was a sale and I got some ribbon and some plastic bowls to hold spinning fiber off the floor away from Little Bastards. Managed to avoid the leftover Lindt Easter chocolate, though. (Go me. I'm on a diet.)

I got home, and was greeted at the door by this.

She was talking in a fake deep voice and insisting she be called Daddy. Heeheehee.

What really killed me was how the hair boofed out from under the hat in the back.

That's not the digital camo, that's an old camo hat that Dadad gave her to play with.


In between Vogue Knitting reviews (sorry it wasn't more vitriolic, but they haven't sucked quite so bad lately... wait 'til the fall and holiday issues, those are usually insane) and runs to the fabric store, I did fiber stuff most of yesterday.

About a year ago I dyed up a whole lot of roving and put it for sale in the shop. No one bought it, so now I'm spinning it. From interest generated by the orange Dreamsicle sock yarn, I'm going to spin it into sock yarn and offer it for sale back at the shop. Unfortunately I'm gonna have to charge a good bit, because spinning sock yarn takes a lot longer than spinning super-bulky. (If you don't spin, think about it - 100 yards of super bulky out of the amount of wool I've got, or 500ish yards of sock yarn. Remember I've gotta ply it, too.)

The new gonna-be sock yarn looks like this:

I'm calling it "Berry Picking". The colors remind me of just that, as a kid. Where I grew up it was cherries (tree in grandma's yard, I got elected to climb it), blueberries (best friend's parents raised them - still do, far as I know - in a special bird-proof surround), and blackberries (field behind the house I grew up in). There's the occasional length of pure light blue, the color of a summer sky. I can almost hear the bees buzzing and smell the green scent and feel the bramble scratches on my legs.

At the least, I'll knit a sample of this when I put it up for sale. Ostensibly so buyers can see how it knits up, but really because I want to see how it knits up. I'm already hoping no one buys it.


As for the Dreamsicle yarn, it's getting turned into toe-up socks. I decided to knit a pair plain for practice before tackling my Roulette sock. I've never knit toe up socks before. (Which means I'll miss the damned end-of-April deadline for the Roulette Roundup, but I don't wanna screw up the sock I need to knit 'cause I love the one I've got.)

Judy's Magic Cast On was used (very clever but next time I'm skipping the slip knot), and then I increased to 74 stitches 'cause I'm knitting this on size ones at about eight stitches per inch.

I've finished the toe and am now at the lovely length of plain old stockinette before I start the gusset increasing. (I'm gonna do a reverse gusset-and-heel-flap heel. It's the only one I know how to knit.)

Next pair, I'm gonna do the bottom of the foot in reverse stockinette, as suggested by Luneray. Sounds delish. The plan is to knit up all the sock yarn that's not selling in the shop. Shouldn't take more than fifty years.

Yes, I'm hooked on sock knitting already. Gloat, all of you.


Back to cuteness, they've been running some shorts on Disney Kids called "Shaun the Sheep". (Links definitely safe for work.) They're one of those great cartoons (claymations?) that is funny for adults, too. So far I've caught references to Monty Python, Spinal Tap, and Saturday Night Fever in there. Plus there are mini knits (watch for the farmer's sweaters). Apparently they're by the Wallace and Grommit people and there is a huge cult following. Who knew?

Introductory music video here. Enjoy.


Rose Red said...

How funny - the instructions I have for JMCO don't use a slip knot. But isn't it amazing - just a fabulous seamless cast on method. The yarn looks fabulous knit up.

Also: totally love the Goober's hair!

Roz said...

Who are the socks for? Lil ol me? (I feel as if I know you and all, since I read you every day...)

Can't wait for the sock yarn on the etsy site...

Word of the day: "bodummat." Hmm... no puns this early in the day...

Goober looks awesome! Fear the Goober!

walterknitty said...

I didnt know the Aardman boys had something new. Shaun the Sheep freaking rocks!

Roxie said...

She's adorable! Whatcha wanna bet she decides to straighten/color/shave off that glorious aureole of hair when she hits her teens? Enjoy it while you can!

Alwen said...

I better not start ranting about uniforms, mmph mmphph mmmph is the sound of me with hands over mouth.


Louiz said...

Yep. Shaun the sheep is cool. He does appear in A Close Shave, a wallace and grommit film. The singer of the intro music is Vic Reeves. It's a cool song but a bit of a song worm. They've recently got another spin off, Timmy Time, which Kathryn loves. Timmy being a child sheep and is aimed at pre-school, probably below 3 as well, as I think Kathryn's a bit old for it, but she loves it.

She loves everything Wallace and Grommit in fact.

Galad said...

I see the sock addiction beginning and can only cheer you on :-)

Love the Goober's hair too. She'll probably want to straighten it at some point just to be contrary.

Have you kept a piece of her curls for posterity? The texture and color so often changes as kids get older (particularly the color - purple, blue, pink. . .)

Amy Lane said...

I knew, I knew! Shaun the Sheep is a fave over here! And the pictures of your little Navy girl are AWESOME. "I'm Daddy"--ROFL!

Bells said...

JMCO is great. I love it. I still need to look at a tutorial when I do it though becasue I forget. I think Cat B's instructions don't use a slip knot.

Ah The goober. She is a riot. I wish we had a video of the deep voice dad impression!

Leonie said...

We get Shaun the Sheep a couple of times a day here and the kids love it. Like the other Wallace and Grommit stuff it is appropriate for all ages. It has been around for a while though so you might be able to find it at a video store or if you are that way inclined you could possibly torrent it.

Socks too huh? I'm a bit sucked in too....

Leonie said...

Just checked, there are 40 episodes!!!

Terby said...

I think socks are good knitting when you have a kid. Portable, easy to put down.

So I gather I should bring the Cat Bordhi book. Although you said you already owned the Zilborg book with the great sock in it...

kgfromfacebook said...

Definitely skip the slip knot, a simple twist does fine for a starting point.

Both your spinning and your child share certain qualities; complexity, daft-ness as well as deftness, and charm in the unexpected.

Donna Lee said...

Socks are just plain addictive. I can't count the number of pairs I've turned out over the past two years but each one has been interesting in it's own right. And my family loves them.

Robin said...

I remember desperate times when my sons were in scouts. I stapled those d*** patches on!

birdmommy said...

BTW, Simply Knitting magazine has a bunch of Shaun the Sheep patterns, etc. in a lot of different issues (I think Alan Dart does them?) Am I seeing a stuffed sheep in the Goober's future?

Radical Bacon said...

I was under the impression that you couldn't wear the digis if you were standing watch in the engine room; they'd melt.